ACT Mobile Messenger allows you to send text messages directly from ACT and is a tool that I see has many uses.
When I spoke to Duane Smith, owner of ACT Mobile Messenger, his passion for his product was infectious and I urge you to try his product if you have a need to text from ACT. Website: www.actmobilemessenger.com
I often review ACT add-ons that I have not used personally and don’t believe I’ll use in the future. Frankly, I just don’t have a need for what they do or accomplish. Having stated that, I still want to make you aware of these products so you can sample them and see if they fill a need in your business or life.
Watch my video for more information on Act Mobile Messenger:
Combining the Power of Act and QuickBooks is easy with QSalesData
Many small businesses that use Act also use QuickBooks to keep track of their financial information. If you have a contact in Act and then you make a sale to that contact you typically have to re-type all of that information into QuickBooks.
Wouldn’t it be nice if you could get Act and QuickBooks to work together?
Allow me to introduce you to QSalesData: they make a link for QuickBooks and Act. QSalesData version 6.0 is compatible with Act 17 and QuickBooks 2015. With this tool you can enter information in one piece of software and have it synchronize to the other. Having noted that, the fact that it can save you some typing time is a minor point in comparison to what you can do with the link between Act and QuickBooks if you allow your Act imagination to run wild. Let me explain.
Imagine for a moment that you are in the ice cream business. If you have a surplus of chocolate ice cream and you need to find all the clients that love and have ordered chocolate ice cream in the past you can run a report in QuickBooks. Once you’ve run the report, you can print out a list of all those clients and then look up all of those clients in Act one at a time. Once you are on the contact, you can call them, email them or send them some type of letter informing them of your great sale on chocolate ice cream.
The problem with this approach is that it is very time-consuming. But what if you could look up all the people that bought chocolate ice cream from directly inside of Act? Because the contacts are pulled up inside Act you can now immediately send them all an email. What if you want to narrow down that list people that purchase both chocolate and vanilla on a regular basis? It can be done. QSalesData pulls all of your financial information into Act and from a sales and marketing point of view I find that to be an outstanding resource for most small businesses that use Act and QuickBooks. QSalesData offers a free trial and in my opinion is well worth the cost in the effort to get to know it.
If you need help with the setup give me a call
QSalesData is $159 per license and it will easily pay for itself in a short period of time. To learn more about it, please watch the video below:
I don’t personally use all of the add-ons I list here. Some add-ons I use on a regular basis. Some add-ons you might only use once or on occasion. My goal when writing about these tools is to expose you to options available to you as an act software consumer. Sometimes, I try to interpret why you might want to use them and how they can possibly help you.
All in all, act is a rather inexpensive tool for small businesses. For the price it can only do so much and act add-on makers recognize this and develop tools that extend the usefulness of act. My experience of working with hundreds of act users through the years is that they all have different needs and requirements. Many times, their personalities tell me what kind of add-ons will work for them.
As always, I’m available to discuss these add-ons with you at any time. Simply contact me by phone or by email.
I always tell my clients to audit their ACT database so they can have a better understanding of who the contacts are in ACT. I audit my ACT database on a regular basis and that’s what attracted me to Contact List Plus many years ago and its why I still use it today. Watch this video to learn the benefits of Grouping information with Contact List Plus.
Through the years I have reviewed many act add-on products and I have come away very frustrated by the way they are presented to potential prospects. Let me tell you why.
To create an act add-on product you have to be a software technician or engineer. You have to envision a need for your software and then craft a solution. I am not technical by nature and yet I’m a software teacher. Because I was an act user before I was an act teacher, I believe I can relate to the average act user.
Unfortunately, there are many act add-on makers that are very technical and have a hard time explaining how to use their products to the average act user. In layman’s terms. That is unfortunate ladies and gentlemen because we all lose if great products are confusing. Confused people do not buy. Let me clarify my last statement. Those that do by the software can come away dissatisfied because it is too confusing to implement.
Why am I bringing this up?
If you are considering buying and act add-on product you want to be aware of how complicated the software is to learn and implement. If the software does the job for you and is worth your time and money, good for the software maker and good for you. Get help if you need it; don’t abandon the software without a fight. However, if you buy software that really isn’t that difficult and yet you find it confusing there has been a breakdown in communication between the makers and the end users.
Dear Act Add-on Makers:
If you make great products but you’re not teachers, call me. I want to help you make your product understandable and easier to use so you sell more of it. When that happens, everyone wins.
How organized are you? One of the biggest obstacles I confront when I start working with new act software clients is their level of organization and planning.
My experience has been that it is rare when my act clients can tell me a specific plan they have for utilizing act. I always asked them to tell me what it is that they are trying to accomplish. Because many of my clients are established businesses I asked them about their plans for following up with existing clients. It always amazes me how they quite often don’t really have a plan.
What is your Monday plan?
Do you have a plan for next Monday? Do you have a plan for the first Monday of the month? Do you know who all of your clients are in act? How about prospects? Asking yourself some fundamental questions can help you layout a groundwork of goals that you can then plan for in the future. Existing businesses might want to ask themselves how often they are going to contact their existing clients. Are they going to call them? How about sending an email? A letter?
These are not earth shattering goals based on months of analysis and planning. They are simple everyday goals. Monday goals.
In my opinion the real strength of act is that it allows you to manage and follow-up on the steps that you feel you need to take to reach your goals. If you are super organized and so busy that you need help automating all the steps that you need to take to reach your goals I’d like to introduce you to SAM:
Sales Automation Manager (SAM) adds to ACT™ the power to automatically schedule activities and automatically create correspondence according to patterns (called “campaigns“) you define. Patricia Egan is an act certified consultant and the owner of SAM.
The SAM Catch-22
In the book Catch-22 by Joseph Heller, a lead character faces a dilemma. He would like to get out of the Army and one way that he can accomplish that is if he proves that he’s crazy. But if he is crazy, he shouldn’t have the wherewithal to prove that he is crazy, and therefore unfit for service. Unfortunately, he will never get out of the service.
If you would like to use SAM because you’re disorganized and need this tool to help you manage your act contacts you face a Catch-22. To use SAM effectively you need to be organized and if you’re organized you might not need SAM. In my opinion, very organized act users can take act it up a notch with a tool like SAM. Below is a video produced by Patricia that will help you decide.